SPOILERS FOR EPISODE 5 OF THE QUANTUM LEAP REBOOT!!!
OK, my confidence in this show is back! And they had to do something different for it to come back. To anyone who’s never seen the original Quantum Leap, the premise was Sam Beckett, played wonderfully by Scott Bakula, was time travelling in the past but couldn’t go back any further than his birthday. There were maybe a couple of exceptions to this but it wasn’t anything too far off.
(Well, except in season 5, he leapt into a Civil War general, but it was someone in Sam’s family so they kinda fudged it to explain it.)
But this episode takes place in the Wild West! In 1879! And Ben finds himself in the body of Diego De La Cruz, a former gunslinger who is now a very old man and past his prime. Diego received a letter from his granddaughter Valentina to come to the town of Salvation because it’s in danger. The railroad wants to destroy the town and build a track through it but Diego’s son, Valentina’s father, built this town from the ground up so people, mostly immigrants and black people, can be safe and start a business and not be prosecuted.
But the railroad has hired an outlaw named McDonough to go in and scare the town in abandoning it. But McDonough would leave them alone if the town can raise enough money to pay the railroad off and leave them alone as well. The town doesn’t have enough money and McDonough knows this so he menaces the town and everyone looks to Ben, as Diego, to save the town and the only way to get out of this: have a duel with McDonough.
The problem: Ben can’t shoot a gun. In fact he hates guns. And Ben is desperately trying to find a peaceful solution to this problem. Meanwhile, Ben and Addison bond more about their relationship as Ben is trying to remember their first date. She describes it (Chinese food, stayed till close, they went to his place, they fucked (this is assumed) and they been in love ever since) and Ben can’t remember it.
After trying to shoot a gun at some cans and bottles, Ben fails and realizes he can’t duel. He tries to reason with McDonough but he wants to shoot it out. Valentina thinks Ben is being a coward and goes after McDonough herself but she gets caught and now Ben has to duel him to get her back alive. Addison gives Ben the idea that maybe all the talents of the townspeople would be enough to stop McDonough, keep him and his gang alive, and turn him in for the reward money. Ben inspires the town and they get to work making a trap.
One guy knows how to make bombs, one guy knows how to make bullets, one lady knows how to start fires, the blacksmith makes a cage, and the new sheriff knows how to shoot from long distances. So the plan goes into action and Ben didn’t even have to fire a gun and McDonough and his crew are captured. The town gets the reward money, they pay off the railroad, Addison tells Ben to tell them about a gold mine not that far from the town and the town is saved.
But then we get a fucking wild ass ending. And again, SPOILERS!
Off and on during this episode, there was a guy giving Ben the stink eye but it was while he was talking to Addison and I thought it was a clever way to finally show “hey Addison is a hologram and isn’t really there, so Ben is just talking to himself and he’s awfully open about taking to himself out in public”. But instead this guy confronts Ben, tells him that his name is Ben, and knows he’s a leaper. Then this guy, whoever it is, tells Ben to stop following them through time. And before things get resolved, Ben leaps. But we don’t see where or who he leapt into! The episode just ends! OH SNAP!!!
The 2022 stuff was somewhat uninteresting. A congresswoman, who is in charge of Project Quantum Leap’s oversight committee, makes an unscheduled visit to the project because she noticed a lot of unusual activity. In case you forget (cause I did), Ben leapt without telling anyone and ahead of schedule so Magic and his team was keeping the fact Ben leapt a secret from everyone, including the government. So they don’t want this congresswoman to find out. I would’ve gave this episode a million points if the congresswoman looked like Marjorie Taylor Greene. Anyway, she interviews each member of the team, they hide the fact that Ben leapt, but she figures it out and tells Magic she’s going to report this. Magic learned that the congresswoman did some drunk driving 10 years ago and killed her brother and in exchange for her silence, Magic promises that Ben will leap back to 10 years ago and save her brother. She agrees and leaves the project alone. Ian asks “but…that’s not how this works” and Magic says “I know…”
Ok, this show is getting better the more it continues. I liked this episode. I like they’re not just stuck within Ben’s lifetime and they’re able to go literally ANYWHERE in time. So that makes me excited to see where they take this. I’m also curious about this other leaper. I’m pretty certain it’s Janice cause we haven’t heard from her in a bit. But maybe not? Maybe it’s Sam? It felt too threatening to be Sam but you never know…
But now I’m worried every episode is going to end with Ben leaping out and not seeing the next person he’s leapt into. I hope it was just for this episode since it did make it more dramatic. So what’s in store for next week? We have no idea! But they extended the season so literally ANYTHING can happen. And, I can’t believe I’m saying this, I’m excited to find out.
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